Have you purchased window coverings lately and spent the national debt of a small nation?
Window coverings are an investment, and no doubt you have made the purchase because such products solve certain problems you have in your home, whether it is light control, thermal issues or just enhancing your decor. As with any other investment, you will need to take certain steps to consistently maintain the newness of your window coverings.
Here are some valuable insider tips:
- Every 12 months, lubricate your tracks: spray silicon into the groove where all the little runners are. You do not need to remove curtains as silicon dries clear. Open and close the curtains briskly a few times to get them moving nicely. This is particularly important on cord drawn tracks, as it will ensure the cord never gets caught and breaks. Silicon is also handy to lubricate a curtain rod with rings that are not gliding smoothly. Do not use WD-40. It is petroleum-based and will make everything in its path black!
- Most sheer curtains may be hand washed, but remember to check the care label. Remove all hooks and wash by hand or place in a pillowslip and wash on the "gentle" or "hand wash" cycle in your machine. Please make sure your machine is high quality, as some machines can tear at sheer fabrics. Replace hooks and hang whilst damp. Sheers will look terrible for two days, but will miraculously uncrease and dry into shape. The best time to wash is in summer.
- If you're using a dry cleaner, make sure they specialise in curtain cleaning. You may also choose to use an onsite curtain cleaner, which eliminates the need to remove and rehang curtains.
- Dirty cords can be cleaned with a mild bleach solution which you can apply with a sponge.
- Pelmets, roman blinds and swags can be vacuumed regularly. An onsite cleaner can generally keep them clean and could be employed maybe once every two or three years.
- Perforated or sunscreen blinds are easy to maintain. Simply vacuum or blow them with a hairdryer periodically to keep dust at bay. Dirt and grease may be removed with a very mild detergent solution.
- The chain control of a roller blind can be sprayed with silicone at the junction where the chain disappears into its housing.
- Dry dirt marks on roller blinds can be easily removed with a soft pencil eraser. Greasy marks need to be covered with talcum powder and left overnight, before brushing with a soft clean toothbrush.
- For nastier stains, there are numerous supermarket products available. Water damage cannot be repaired on fabrics! At the first sight of mould, get curtains professionally cleaned; if you leave the mould to grow you won’t be able to repair your window coverings!
- If small pinholes begin to develop on the back flock or rubber coating of fabric/lining, give it a touch up with a dab of liquid paper.
- Plantation shutters can be kept clean using a damp cloth. If white timber shutters are chipped or the paint is damaged you can use a little gap sealant to fill the damage (touch up paint is a better option of course!) Over time, shutter blades may become either loose or stiff with constant use. A high quality product will generally have a tension screw at the side which you simply turn with a Phillips head screwdriver to adjust the blades.
Those are just a few gems that will keep your window coverings looking gorgeous and performing well for many years.